Science and technology has become essential in the food and agricultural industries across the world. The west has clearly led the way but it is heartening to know that Asia is not being left behind. This month sees the highly prodigious Future Food Asia Awards (FFAA) in Singapore.. The FFAA was formed to further the belief that Asia has a role to play in the advancement of the food industry and can also offer investment to players within that development schema.
Future Food Asia Awards 2018
The annual event has been set for May 23rd. Numerous applications have been received from across the world but only 10 start-ups have been selected to go forward to their new concepts and ideas. It is good to know new ideas are not singly about enhancing profits and processes but focussed on green industry and sustainability. It is hoped that current environmental issues such as growing urbanization and increasing population along with scarcity of farming land and the ever-present global warming challenges will be confronted in this year’s new ideas. The winner will pick up $100,000 US dollars and four runners up will also be awarded a S$50,000 start-up grant.
A challenging process to find the award winners
The process of finding the finalists began in early February and ended in the first week of April. 19 different countries took part which was a 30% rise in the number of applicants in 2017. As well as symbolising the importance of the awards themselves, it also demonstrates there is a very healthy momentum around technological innovations within the agriculture and food industries.
The competition itself is supported by governmental departments and brand names such as the Singapore Economic development Board; one of the world’s largest agricultural processors – Archer Daniels Midland Company; and a company supportive to all start-ups in the food industry – the enterprise development agency Enterprise Singapore. Partners and supporters also include nutrition experts Royal DSM and global food merchants Louis Dreyfus.
Here are some of the finalists to look out for:
- BioPrime AgriSolutions Pvt. Ltd
Based in India, this company is making great headway in developing new innovations which are fundamentally designed to redefine and transform agricultural and farming processes which – subsequently – are not only changing the lives of consumers but also those who work within the industry. Specifically, the two patented platforms SNIPR™ and Bio-nexus™ are proving to be a highly effective interface between crop protection and nutrition, and a the first defence against climate change and crop losses.
Based in Japan, recent innovations have included a natural ingredient-based bioplastic additive to produce strengthened plastic for industrial processes. For sustainability goals and purposes, it has the great benefit of being 100% biodegradable.
BLH Aqua Technology
This company which is based in Korea presents a new system which enhances the photosynthetic efficiency of plants with their Aquitinox technology. The beauty of this platform is it will enable farmers to reduce water and fertiliser usage at the same time as increasing crop yields. Not only does this mean a reduction in agricultural costs and a hike in profits, but it will offer a great support in areas where there is scarcity of food or water.
Green Acres co. Ltd
Based in Taiwan, Green Acres co. Ltd is looking to find ways to reduce the amount of antibiotics used within the animal farming system. Their methods are a little controversial, as they use traditional Chinese medicine and herbs to improve the health of farming stock, however this approach has already been proven to have significant beneficial results with poultry farming.
The whole of the food process supply chain does not rely on just effectiveness and sustainability of the agricultural phase alone. The company based in Korea have created a nano-catalyst technology which keeps food fresh throughout the supply chain and helps to increase shelf-life.
Another start-up entrant from Korea, this company has focussed its attention on streamlining the processes involved when canned beverages are consumed at the same time as finding a solution to excessive waste in packaging of food products. Xre have created “Stay on tabs” for cans (completely compatible with existing can manufacturers) which allows contents of the can to be reclosed easily and remain reasonably fresh. The ultimate gain is a huge reduction in waste.
These are just a few of the innovative ideas, companies and start-ups who will be vying for recognition on May 23rd in Singapore. Watch out for future articles to see the results.
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